Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Sugar tax - why? will it work? Get some academic facts

Last week the budget mentioned a policy to introduce a new soft drinks industry levy to help tackle childhood obesity.

Here are some resources.

In November 2015 the House of Commons Library published a report on a parliamentary debate about a tax on sugary drinks . This provides background on recent medical and parliamentary activity.

Reports recommending a sugar levy/ tax

Also published in November 2015 Commons Health Committee report on childhood obesity.

Public Health England October 2015 - Sugar reduction - the evidence for action. Government public health campaign with smart sugar app

BMA Food for thought recommended 20% levy on sugary drinks.

Cornelsen, L., Carreido, A Health related taxes on food

and beverages. 5thMay 2015. Food Research Collaboration Policy Brief/ Considers evidence and possible impact

Economic and health impact modelling

Exploring the Acceptability of a Tax on Sugar Sweetened Beverages- Liverpool John Moores brief evidence review 2013
The Incidence of Taxes on Sugar-Sweetened Beverages: The Case of Berkeley, California NBER 2015

Medical reports on Sugar consumption

WHO guidelines and reports on sugar consumption worldwide.

World Cancer Research Fund curbing sugar consumption report.

Responses to the Budget

NATCEN insight into budget 
Sugar taxes a briefing IEA 
New Economics Foundation - Sugar tax Surprise.
Celebrity Chef Jamie Oliver - campaigns.and reponse to tax
Action on Sugar charity has resource guides and campaign news on reducing sugar
British Soft Drinks Federation response. Calorie reduction pledge from the industry
Food and Drink Federation response

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Today is Budget 2016! Follow the news and predictions with our recommended links.

The budget will take place on 16th March 2016
Live TV will be made available on the parliamentary channel
Transcripts will be made available later in the day on Hansard
LSE members can watch archived materials (since 1997) via the Box of Broadcasts service 

News reports

BBC news

LSE staff and students can our FT.com subscription for special reports plus Nexis UK for daily newspaper coverage

Financial analysis from acountancy and financial services, tax firms

IFS produce a green budget. Their website also has other associated papers.
Deloitte preview
EY Club Budget Preview
Saffery Champness
Grant Thornton

Industry and think tank submissions to the Chancellor.
Federation of Small Businesses 
Freight Transport Association
National Housing Federation
National Farmers Union.

Social care organisations
Carers UK 

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Pension reform- should the state pension age be changed?

Recently the media has covered extensively news about the possibility that the state pension age will rise further
An government review has been announced. Its terms of reference are given on the website.
The Parliament website has links to recent bills, briefing papers, reports and debates on all aspects of pension reform.

The Independent Review of Retirement Income (IRRI) recently suggested that people need more help in preparing financially for retirement 

The Pensions Policy Institute also recently released a report

The Under-pensioned 2016 is part of a a series exploring the pension income of women, ethnic minorities and disabled people. This 2016 report also explores the pension income of carers and the self-employed. The two previous reports were published in 2003 and 2008. They can be accessed here:
All show problems in preparing for retirements amongst certain sections of the British public.

IFS has produced some useful resources on pension income and pension age. They include a historical summary from 1948-2010
They have also recently analysed the impact of the rise in female pension age on the labour market
and considered future patterns of work, retirement and pension income

Other key groups that have commented and researched pension reform include:

 NatCent social research report on changes to work and income around retirement age.
TUC reports on inequality and pensions.
Citizen Advice consumer researche on how older people think about pensions and retirement.
PWC blog on all aspects of pensions including this paper on flexible working and the future of pensions.
IEA has called for faster reform.
International Longevity Research centre has reports on recent social science research on the nature and impact of retirement.
Pensions and Lifetimes savings Association. Industry body

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

International Womens 's Day today - why it is still necessary

Today we celebrate international Women's day
In 2016 the theme is pledge for parity.

in 2015 the World Economic Forum estimated that it would take until 2133 to close the global gender gap

In the UK the Fawcett Society has released some infographics that show 
29 % of MPs are women, 45% of academics are women but only 22% of professors,
They have also released this week a nationwide poll
‘Parents, work and care: Striking the Balance’ which shows disparity in perceptions of working mothers - the CEO stated.
'The motherhood penalty and daddy bonus are still a strong feature of our workplaces. It’s clear that when a woman has a baby she is overwhelmingly perceived as becoming less committed to her job, while a dad is much more likely to be seen as more committed.  This drives inequality and forces women and men into traditional male breadwinner, female carer roles.’
The UCU Union released a report called Holding down Women's Pay

Recently the House of Lords discussed women's empowerment - the progress and what still needs to be done.
Rights Info has a great posting on the struggle for women's rights and what still needs to be done.
Oxfam has a page on development frameworks and women with highlighted news and resources.

 On a more positive note.
Read the statement on the United Nations website 
TES has collections of classroom resources and lesson plans for teachers.
See some feminist political posters from India on UW Madison digital library
Be inspired by the words of women's liberation activists on the BL Sisterhood and Beyond history website.
 and the twitter updates #IWD2016
and LSE Women Making history